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#1 Vaaish

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Posted 30 May 2003 - 06:19 PM

I didn't see this assigned to anyone so I went ahead with a sketch since I've done alot of space scenes in the past.

Avenger prototype rough sketch:

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I figured a combination of smooth and box would fit for a transport/attack cract with operations both in space and atmospheric. I've tried to get a bit of Crix's firestorm style in there as well since it is a combination of Human and Alien techs. As of yet I haven't placed external hardpoints and the thruster assembly is located at the rear, this may change if the craft needs to have a c130 style loading ramp.

Comments please.

#2 gambino

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Posted 30 May 2003 - 06:51 PM

ok, nice stuff Vaaish i checked out your work....so let me see what else i can work on in here...

hmm..ok stun gun?

anyone do the stun gun...i don't see a screen shot, or pic...so i'm guessing this is not completed..

correct me if i'm wrong please :happybanana:

#3 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 31 May 2003 - 04:04 AM

No one is doing the stun gun yet.

Breunor has the list of who is doing what I believe

#4 Breunor

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Posted 31 May 2003 - 08:45 AM

The assetlist can be found here. I've added you in for the stun rod gambino. If there are any other items you'd like to do, let me know. Once you have the model completed either before or after texturing, please email me the file so I can upload it to the server and link it on the list. Also post a screenshot when you're ready, and I'll link that as well.
Thanks!

#5 Breunor

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Posted 31 May 2003 - 08:56 AM

Vaaish, I put you down for the Avenger. Being that it's the "ultimate craft", expect a lot of people to have comments on the design :D

Not to worry though, it doesn't matter what the model is, there's always lots of comments about it. Everybody has their own opinion. Check out this page if you like, some of us were discussing the wing design of the avenger there. It's certainly not required to look like that however, but your sketch already captures a lot of that look. Definitely post shots as the work progresses, we look forward to seeing it!

#6 Vaaish

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 11:39 AM

OK here are some WIP shots. It is about 250 polys quad and 470 or so polys tris.

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It still needs to be scaled to fit the specs for seating so width and length might change a little, also needs landing gear and the egress hatch on the back. beyond that if I have any polys free I'll start putting in more detail. In all I'm shooting for about 800 to 1000 for the model.

Suggestions comments?

#7 Anglachel

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 12:11 PM

Ohhhh. Vaaish, um, do you mind if I take it for a spin around the block a couple times? I promise not to go too fast :naughty: .

#8 Vaaish

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 12:58 PM

Hehe, Anglachel, I would wait untill the thing has a back door and landing gear before taking it for a spin. :)


I have a problem. I was going to scale the craft unfortunately I'm getting an error with importing the block.3ds to be used for the comparison. Would anyone be willing to try sending me another version of this or one in a DXF or OBJ format?

#9 GreatGold

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 02:10 PM

Hey -

I'm liking it...a lot :D . Does have some StarTrek influence, but who says thats a bad thing... :wink:

Gold

ps - Great work with the poly count, although, for now I'd suggest putting in more and then trimming down. The reason I say this is, we need a real nice model for the X-Net.
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#10 Vaaish

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 03:09 PM

OK next update. It now has the back end finished and since I couldn't get the 3ds block to work I set units to inches and set the grid to 1 unit per grid line no subdivisions so according to that the egress hatch is 2 units wide, and the interior space between the benches is 4 units wide with the corridor going forward 2 units wide It can seat 26 but has room for about 28.

I'm currently at 321 polys quad and about 640 polys tris.

I wasn't plesased with the foreshell so I made a few adjustments to it to blend it better with the rest of the ship.

Next I have the landing gear and then I'll see how many polys I have to play with for addedd detail.
I'm planning on making skid landing gear.

@great gold: where is the ST influence. about the only thing I could possibly see was the egress hatch but that was just added.

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#11 demich

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 03:26 PM

Hehe Now i understand why i have been asked to make images with grey background :). Make it on gray background and without strong shadows if you can.
But very nice work :) I'm looking forward for textures :)

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#12 Anglachel

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 03:50 PM

Hehe, Anglachel, I would wait untill the thing has a back door and landing gear before taking it for a spin. :)

If the cockpit is sealed I won't need a back door. I can set it down without landing gear. Any landing you can walk away from is a good landing for the pilot, maybe different story for the aircraft.

I believe the skid landing gear is what was decided on so you right on track with that. Can't wait to see it finished. Keep it up :beer:

#13 Vaaish

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 09:20 PM

OK here it is, the modeling phase is just about finished she is at 483 polys quad and 940 tris... does anyone know if we are going tris or quad?

She does sit kind of low to the ground but that is so the exit ramp doesn't get too steep. I will hazard a guess that the interior space will need to be 4 units high so I might need to work with that reguard. other than that I can't think of much to say.

Anyway any final commets or suggestions on her.

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#14 Anglachel

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 09:39 PM

:rock: :rock: looks great to me :rock: :rock:

I believe tris are the only polys being used, I don't think quads are.

#15 GreatGold

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 10:11 PM

Vaaish -

Absolutely brilliant! One quick question, are you planning on making a more detailed version for the X-Net Entry? As it is, I think that will do more than well when textured and in game.

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#16 Vaaish

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Posted 01 June 2003 - 11:03 PM

Thanks,

I don't think a new model for Xnet is necessary with the texture on it this model could be used for both. Since it has to be at least somewhat similar to a modern aircraft basically all the wires, equiptment, and all that good stuff are covered by the hull. Even with the alien tech it seems that it still needs some form of aerodynamics for rentry and atmospheric flight so again the hull covers everything. I really can't think of anywhere I would put more detail unless I maybe added a few more points to the foreshell and even then I would still be within the poly limit for battlescape.

The only other place more detail could go would be seats inside and maybe auxilary thrusters. I would attach the weapons pods on the wing tips and that would have to be modular depending on what weapons it was outfitted with.

IMO I just can't see where I could add detail that a texture couldn't do it just as well w/o just adding detail for detail's sake.

For textures are we using 256x256 or higher?

@Anglachel: Ok then this is final ~950 polys in tris.

#17 Anglachel

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 12:09 AM

You could make parts more rounded on the craft, like the front part of the wings. Smoothing it out is probably all you could do. You get a much higher poly count for the x-net. But that is up to you. :D

Being the ultimate craft and based on alien tech, the texture will probably be the iridium sheen that the alien tech is using. Deimos will be able to answer that.

Edited by Anglachel, 02 June 2003 - 12:13 AM.


#18 Cubik

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 12:23 AM

I have always thought that we were doing 512x512 for the Ufopedia, and then scaling them down to 256x256 for the Battlescape.

Edited by Cubik, 02 June 2003 - 12:23 AM.


#19 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 02:15 AM

512 would be reasonable for the pedia.
you might even be able to use a couple that size if you need to.

We'll probably need to shrink that for in game. (Does geforce 2 do bigger than 256?? can't remember.)

Alien tech uses an iridium sheen for the outside shell of the craft, which is either going to be a shader or an envmap.

Really nice work. It reminds me of the craft in the original intro :D (One of Jonh Reitzes finest moments)

#20 Breunor

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 07:59 AM

My first view of the craft is at this point, and it looks AWESOME! Sub 1000 polys is great, the model looks very smooth so if you don't need the extra polys don't bother with them. As to the scale, so long as you base the design with the premise that a "square" in the original game is 1x1 meters, 2.5 meters high you'll be fine. I've been using fuzzy math and assuming that equals 40 inches square and 100 inches tall. :D So the rear hatch should be 80 inches wide, etc. As long as it fits to that scale, if your model is larger or smaller when opened we can scale it to size easily enough.

I don't think there's any design influence from Star Trek, but the Klingon Bird of Prey's angle wings are such a dominant image in sci-fi that anything similar suggests that influence. There's no getting around that dominance I guess. So long as we don't design ships with a forward-sitting disc and two cylinder engines off the sides...

#21 Vaaish

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 09:32 AM

Alien tech uses an iridium sheen for the outside shell of the craft, which is either going to be a shader or an envmap.

Would the Avenger be considered more alien than human or would all of the parts that are alien be hidden? If so would there be any sheen on it?

#22 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 11:13 AM

The current idea is that the alien alloy is zero friction (or something) and so you can't paint it.
But there could easily be human alloy "inserts" and panels in non-critical areas.

I would guess that most of the craft skin would be alien. but some parts ( surrounds to windows and doors, engine parts, maybe some wing panels), could be human tech.

Try a few things out by making some polys a dirrefent material, (say olive drab green), and playing around with it to see what looks good.

#23 Deimos

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 11:29 AM

Drewid you beat me to it :)

Basically I was going to say the same thing. The only other thing I'd say would be decals and craft markings. They'd probably go onto the areas where the non critical alloys. But as they'd be in effect large stickers,we could get away with saying the scientists found a glue that worked for sticking decals onto the hull. In the research section of the x-net it could be explained in detail about the material properties of the alien alloys and the only way we could get them formed into useable forms was to use a 'bonding substance' to glue the parts together as we don't understand how the aliens manufacture and shape the alloys into useable items.

If you look at the Lotus Elise it uses a bonding substance (glue) to attach the panels and subframes together and the result is one of the lightest and strongest cars out there. Oh did I mention they're gorgeous as well ;)

#24 Vaaish

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 12:09 PM

Ok.... I'll assume then that the exterior hull will be primarily alien. Interior will be human so painting shouldn't be a problem.

how about wear and carbon scoring? will that be visable on the alien alloys?

My current plan is to have two 512 maps. One for exterior and gear and one for the interior. Will this be a problem?

When I flipped it over to tris I'm coming up with only about 760 ot so polys total so It is a bittle below my target :)

#25 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 12:57 PM

2 256s would be ok. But we might have to shrink those for in-game. We'll see when we get there.

Can't wait to see it textured.

#26 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 01:03 PM

There's a guy called Hutchinson, who has discovered strange forces behind "the Hutchinson effect". this is caused by interacting electromagnetic forces and can cause non metallic objects to levitate, and even to fuse wood and metal together.

Perhaps decals can be applied like that. They are sunk into the surface.

#27 Vaaish

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 01:03 PM

2 256s would be ok. But we might have to shrink those for in-game. We'll see when we get there.

Anything lower than 256 is tiny and really won't look like much more than a blur of color: it's almost quake 1 texture size. I would think that a GF2 could easily handle 256's and with a 2004 release 512's could even possible make it.

If I go to 128's I might as well only give the model a base color and model in the insigneas and other stuff, since it would probabl give better results.

#28 Deimos

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 01:03 PM

I'd say you've been watching too much Star wars :D Though I don't think it'd be an issue for the avenger we could make weapon scoring in the same way as bullet holes. It'd be interesting to see burn marks on an avenger after a mid air battle with a large ufo.

Basically if it's damage related it should be visible.

Hope that helps.

#29 Deimos

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 01:06 PM

There's a guy called Hutchinson, who has discovered strange forces behind "the Hutchinson effect". this is caused by interacting electromagnetic forces and can cause non metallic objects to levitate, and even to fuse wood and metal together.

Perhaps decals can be applied like that. They are sunk into the surface.

Hmm, I like the idea of that. It'd be more like molecular bonding. I think we should shif this discussion into the creative text area :)

#30 Vaaish

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 03:40 PM

OK hereare the first pics of this thing textured. As you can tell I'm not the greatest with texturemaps but this should give the gurus enough to understand what I'm shooting for.

I still have to map the skidwells, landing skids and interior. but they go on the same texture as the exit ramp.

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#31 Breunor

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 04:20 PM

That's a gorgeous looking model. Is it accurate to say your texture is the mottled grey surrounded by the edge of darker material? If so, maybe that could be scaled down and stretched more to save on the texture's size? I'm a texture newb, so I'll stop before my foot goes shooting into my mouth. ^_^

#32 GreatGold

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 06:31 PM

Hmm, I like the idea of that. It'd be more like molecular bonding. I think we should shif this discussion into the creative text area


Yup, I'd say we can definately look into that.

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#33 red knight

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 07:29 PM

Deimos/Drew: Do this craft going to have that strange sheen effect we were talking about???

By the way looks pretty nice...

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#34 Vaaish

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 08:29 PM

Ok last update for the night.... I think I finally got a hull texture I like, now I'm just probably going to rebuild the dark edges to see if I can get things looking a little sharper. Currently everything is on the same map file. but I'm not liking the detail I get off that.

How many maps are we limited to per object. I would definately like to put this on 2 or 3 maps.

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#35 Deimos

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Posted 02 June 2003 - 09:11 PM

RK, probably most if not all of the model will be made usingalien alloys. If not all then I can see aread where structual strength, heat shielding and damage capability will definitely be using alien alloys.

If you think how the shuttle and blackbird and all other high mach aircraft are, they all use specialised materials in their construction to combat the high temperatures on the surfaces at high mach speeds.

So the nose assembly, wing fronts (and possibly top surfaces for less drag) upper and lower hull would be made out of alien alloys. Would be intersting to see a design where a mixture of materials are used as there would be areas of the flight surfaces that would need wind drag to make them useable. I'm thinking of mainly the control surfaces where an amount of drag would help with turning the craft.

The model is looking good Vaaish. I like the angular look the map has given the craft. Would it be possible in the next update to include a bigger piccie of it?

#36 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 01:05 AM

Ok I didn't like the size of that old texture so now I'm trying to get this to fit into 2 512 maps. I think the quality is much improved.
here are a fe larger pics.

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#37 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 01:06 AM

and another

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#38 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 01:07 AM

and the last

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#39 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 01:41 AM

I gotta say I prefer the mottled version myself. It's got that military thing going. But that might be irrelavent anyhow with the sheen on.

Could you post up the maps so I can see how you are working it?

#40 Deimos

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 08:49 AM

The more I look at this craft the more I'm reminded of Starfleet It has that whole X-ship going on. BTW Vaaish thats a real good thing as it reminds me of my Saturday mornings as a kid. Yes Commander Macarrra :D

for anyone wondering what I'm rambling about here's a piccie of the craft.

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#41 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 09:10 AM

I gotta say I prefer the mottled version myself. It's got that military thing going. But that might be irrelavent anyhow with the sheen on.

Could you post up the maps so I can see how you are working it?

I can add more of the mottling back in, it is just a matter of changing layer transparencies. Deimos thats quite interesting.... Guess there really isn't anything new under the sun.

here is the texture for the sides, back, front, and inside. All things considered I'm going to be able to fit the landing skids an wheel wells on the other texture:

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  • Attached File  avg2.jpg   123.89K   8 downloads


#42 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 09:25 AM

And here is the one for the top, bottom, and landing skids:

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#43 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 05:20 PM

OK the textures are complete. It uses 2 512x512 maps and I think this gives adequate performace for ingame use.

Here are the final renders:

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#44 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 05:21 PM

and another

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#45 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 05:23 PM

and the last

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#46 Deimos

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 08:43 PM

Very nice stuff Vaaish. That'd look really good as an ingame model.
I think I saw that it's 940 polys. Which is a good low figure but as the limit for battlescape character models is 1200-1500 max I think you can probably push the craft a bit higher than that. Remember that the roof of the avenger will have to be removeable in battlescape as you'll need to see your troops inside.

The current thinking for the heavy weapons platforms is that it takes the space of four operatives and so can use up a lot more polys. For the big stuff like the Avenger and skyranger we're thinking along the lines of maybe the limits could be higher.

Definitely keep that model as it is now but how about making a high poly version for the X-net with. Our current limit for smaller items in x-net is 3000 polys which as you can imagine will give us pretty highly detailed models for x-net. The absolute limit in x-net will be 6000 polys (which is what the GF2 can handle RK will be able to better explain why) so we were thinking that a 4000 poly limit for the larger items like human and alien craft would give us the kind of detail we're looking for. Plus it means we can have ultra hig res maps on the models which will only add to the detail.

For the x-net version of the craft you've got loads of leeway to add in all sorts of minutae detail, like turbulence generators on the wing and wingtips, aerodynamically correct wingshapes and well I'm sure you get the idea :D

For the x-net we're looking for the ultra high detail as it'll carry over to the battlescape where that kind of detail won't be visible, but because of the way the brain works it'll add in the detail seen from x-net and the player will subconciously see more detail that there actually is. Take for example my concept of the laser pistol. There is no way in battlescape you'd see the bronze power clip or the correct dimensions of the pistol but you'd know it's there because you'll have already seen the high res picture in x-net.

In the original game, there were generic sprites that were re-used for various things. For example the trooper with a grey blob held out in his hand represented not only the grenade but also the proxymine, high explosive, medikit, mindscanner and alien grenade. I've not seen one person complain that they couldn't see the actual model that was supposed to represent say the medikit instead of the grey blob and that's in looking through these forums and speaking to other people that are fanatical about xcom and notice details like that.

So as long as the model (medikit) looks similar to what it looks like in x-net the player's brain does the rest of the work and fills in the missing detail. The x-net version would have all the glorious detail that you'd expect a medikit to have to give the player the image of what it represents in battlescape. That's the thinking behind having high res items in x-net. It also allows us in the art dept (if we have the spare time) to show off and animate some of the largers stuff like the human craft, maybe having it go through landing and taking off procedures or something. Of course if we don't have the time for V1.0 it can be considered for a later release.

Well that went on a bit but hopfully I've explained why we feel it's important to have higher detail models for x-net.

#47 Vaaish

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 09:11 PM

I think I saw that it's 940 polys. Which is a good low figure but as the limit for battlescape character models is 1200-1500 max I think you can probably push the craft a bit higher than that.

Remember that the roof of the avenger will have to be removeable in battlescape as you'll need to see your troops inside.

Definitely keep that model as it is now but how about making a high poly version for the X-net with. Our current limit for smaller items in x-net is 3000 polys which as you can imagine will give us pretty highly detailed models for x-net. The absolute limit in x-net will be 6000 polys (which is what the GF2 can handle RK will be able to better explain why) so we were thinking that a 4000 poly limit for the larger items like human and alien craft would give us the kind of detail we're looking for. Plus it means we can have ultra hig res maps on the models which will only add to the detail.

For the x-net version of the craft you've got loads of leeway to add in all sorts of minutae detail, like turbulence generators on the wing and wingtips, aerodynamically correct wingshapes and well I'm sure you get the idea :D

For the x-net we're looking for the ultra high detail as it'll carry over to the battlescape where that kind of detail won't be visible, but because of the way the brain works it'll add in the detail seen from x-net and the player will subconciously see more detail that there actually is. Take for example my concept of the laser pistol. There is no way in battlescape you'd see the bronze power clip or the correct dimensions of the pistol but you'd know it's there because you'll have already seen the high res picture in x-net.

I'll take this in chunks:

Once again, I'm having trouble deciding on WHAT detail to add. about the only thing I can think of ATM is maybe modeling hull plates but that would increase the dificulty of having the interior visable. Again for the interior, I can increase the detail like add in accileration couches but it will interfere with the operation of the interior in game by adding geometry that would mess up the placement of characters or would require the use of a third 512 map. The other place I could add detail would be maybe putting in the traction on the exit ramp and landing skids, or model the indentions on the landing lights up front. Most of the detail I could add to the ingame model would be frivolus and the polys would be better spent on the environment or characters.

Something to take into account with this model is that the design is purposfully angular and the wings purposely do not have proper aerodynamic qualities. I am doing this to take into account the alien tech negating the need for some of these things. If it does not I can go ahead and add in those wings in the ingame version.


next:

Can the transparency be done using a shader or alpha when a unit is inside or does it need to allow for the physical geometry to be sliced?

Next:
Ok, again I'm havingtrouble burning polys on the exterior... maybe having weapons pods on the wing tips but if we do that I can use the rest of my poly limit to put it on the ingame one.... the biggest things would be the interior.

Xnet shouldn't change map size if you are designing for the GF2 I think either 256 or 512 is the largest it can support. (personally I think we should drop the GF2 and just go with a current low end like the GF3) Either way on the lowest end of the spectrum we have to make sure we don't flood out the cards texture memory.


I think thats about it, thanks for the comments.

#48 Anglachel

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 09:22 PM

Would models of craft weapons just be added (if they will show up on battlescape) based on how it is equiped?

#49 Deimos

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Posted 03 June 2003 - 09:43 PM

I'd say yes, it'd make sense to have it show what the player has equipped it with.

#50 Breunor

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Posted 04 June 2003 - 11:43 AM

Perhaps an area where more detail could be put is the cockpit view from the outside? By making the canopy more transparent, you could put in a couple seats and control panels that would be visible from outside. In respect to the aerodynamic wings, what if the they were just rounded some, like beveled edges towards the tips, and where it gets thicker next to the body have it taper more there.